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The Honest Way Forum • View topic - Google Check, Lost Rankings

Google Check, Lost Rankings

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Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby James » Mon Feb 09, 2009 9:12 pm

I was checking my Statcounter queries today and found one with site:mydomain.com I knew it was some dude from Google, so I checked my queries for next few hours, to see will he dig a bit more. There was one more site:mydoamin.com search and several searches for the keywords I try to rank my posts for.

After about 2 hours, about 10 Search engine searches more and a bit of clicking through my site, I lost ranking for the main keyword completely, while several posts I had on Page 1,2 and three were pushed down by several pages.

I'm just glad I wasn't deindexed. I guess this means I can continue working on this niche, but a bit more carefully. I should also say that I used AMA, Traffic Kahuna, LV, AM and Backlink Solutions to get links to this website.

Will update this thread again when I notice any changes.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby gabbyjay268 » Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:54 pm

I have two questions that pricked my curiosity: Is this a pretty competitive niche? And how quickly were you building links to it?
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby James » Mon Feb 09, 2009 11:28 pm

I guess it could be called competitive. It's a niche which I started as a long term project in June 2008. It happened that I started ranking for main and some long tail keywords sooner than I thought.

The main keyword belongs to a home decoration niche and consists of one word only. Adwords tool shows a bit more than 200.000 searches per month on exact setting. And I got on page 2 or page 3, so I guess that caused visit from G.

Concerning links, I started with articles, comments and Social Bookmarking links. In October I started with AMA. 30 days ago I did some Traffic Kahuna and I started with LV 10 days ago ( 3 links per day ).

I checked my Statcounter queries a bit more today, and first visit from G was with using a 3 word keyword I didn't even targeted. Then they did some more queries on 2 word keywords I targeted with my posts. I guess it's just that I got too high on SE.

And I have to say that I'm using one of Court's Sniper Themes, which probably should be changed. The problem is, I can't get decent AdSense like I can with his Dateless Sniper Theme.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby lissie » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:00 am

How did you know it was Google looking - did you recognise an IP?
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby James » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:15 am

Yup. Statcounter shows you everything and it goes like this:

74.125.75.4 (Google Inc) [Label IP Address]

California, Los Angeles, United States, 0 returning visit


Now that I think about the niche, I didn't have anything solid to hold on too. Other websites on Page1 and Page2 are all big stores that are selling these products or making them, while I only have lots of information, tips, guides and a 336*250 AdSense block on the top. It's not a bad thing, generally speaking, but when you get among 20 sites that are making and/or selling products you can only talk about, you look kinda suspicious.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby aprilk » Tue Feb 10, 2009 9:49 am

It sure would be interesting to know for sure what's going on. Personally I don't like going for big competitive KWs because I know that if I did get to the first page I would have a lot of work to stay there. By targeting KWs that very few other people are going for pretty much prevents this. I would rather target 50 KWs that get 10 searches a day than 1 KW that brings in 500 per day.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby James » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:25 pm

I also wish to know why exactly this happened because that would be a great way to learn and avoid it next time. I sent email to Griz so I hope he will be willing to take a look and reveal why I got a penalty.

Believe me, I never even imagined getting so high. I just wanted to have a blog that I could target many keywords with and that would have traffic without being on the page 1. I really don't know how I got on Page 2 for a one word keyword that gets a bit more than 8.000 searches a day. I mean, that's just crazy.

I am very glad I didn't got deindexed. This also means that they didn't spot AMA links and all other link networks I used. These are good news indeed. I will update you guys with any new information, because we could all learn something from this. To tell you the truth, I am actually glad it happened. In a way :-D
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby bgmacaw » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:32 pm

It's the 'Court Curse'. Using the Keyword Sniper theme is like hanging a "Kick Me" sign on your behind. I think if they see that you're using it they slap first and ask questions later, maybe. It's just assumed that you're up to no good.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby DeMerchant » Tue Feb 10, 2009 1:48 pm

This sounds like something that happened to me a long time ago and my site is SLOWLY battling back after a LONG hard road.


It has been like 9 months and as you can see, after an initial explosion the site has been growing in traffic ever since it was hit... it's been emotionally tolling knocking a site down to 1/4th of the traffic is was getting after a number of days... but over the past new days I've hit position 1 for a an hour or 2 at a time... hopefully spot 1 will be mine soon

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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby James » Tue Feb 10, 2009 2:01 pm

@bgmacaw

Yes, I also think that is one or even the main reason for the penalty. I've been searching for new AdSense themes last night and will change it for sure.

@DeMerchant

It's good to hear your site is getting back. I think that we should just keep building and get links and the penalty will be lifted in time. The only thing to do is to find that thing that G slapped you for and make change.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby DeMerchant » Tue Feb 10, 2009 2:47 pm

To tell you the truth I've always been very skeptical that it has anything to do with courts themes... but my site too uses sniper... which is too much... so i guess it will be changed...

Do you guys still think the theme should be optimized by putting the keywords in H1 in the upper right?

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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby bgmacaw » Tue Feb 10, 2009 3:33 pm

I think the H1 in the upper right in small light colored, low contrast, text is one of those 'kick me' signs because it looks like you're trying to game things.

I use two strategies instead.

If I'm working a particular keyword, especially if it's a good match with the domain name, I make the H1 with it big and bold so that there's no mistake about what the site is about. The post description I leave out unless I feel the need to target a few extra keywords but I put it in a <p> tag, not an H tag. The post title is an H2.

If the domain name isn't a good match or if I'm want to work individual posts at the keyword level I make the header a graphic with the domain name or some variation on it while making the post titles the H1. I use All-in-One SEO to change the title metatag appropriately as well. In one case, I removed the HTML part of the header section entirely and let the post title be the header (this was a variation on a Boring Memo theme, BTW).
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby djnuttall » Fri Feb 13, 2009 12:30 pm

Crap I have seen a lot of these site:mydomain.com lately. I never realized it was Google. I'll have to go back and check these domains to see what is going on. Plus I guess I need to get rid of Court's theme for good.

Thanks for the post! Its an eye opener. :shock:
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby James » Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:35 pm

I said I will update you when something changes with my site. And as of today, all my rankings have returned. I actually can't believe this, since I know G people were snooping my blog for about 2 hours.

It's a good day for me today. My other blog will is breaking daily traffic stats, from regular 150 per day it will be around 350 it seems. Damn, it feels like its Christmas today. I'm gonna have to place 2 WPMU blogs on our free hosts, I can afford it now goddammit.
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby ghuraba_t » Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:49 pm

Can't the site:mydomain.com inquiry just be from a competitor trying to analyze your site?
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Re: Google Check, Lost Rankings

Postby Tel » Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:53 am

It certainly could as I do this all the time - but James' snoop was definitely from Google as the IP reveals who is doing the snooping.

I've also had this from The Microsoft Corporation which is interesting - then again it could be a bored employee with nothing better to do (yeah ,let Bill Gates pay for my surfin'...) :lol:
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